The Mamre Revitalization Project is an initiative by the City of Cape Town to promote the preservation and restoration of Mamre’s rich heritage resources, while helping to alleviate poverty and promote skills transfer.

Eco Design Architects were appointed to run a series of community participation and design workshops (Charettes) to determine the wants & needs for a small project serving the community. In this process Eco Design Architects came up with a Masterplan for the community of Mamre. Furthermore we also documented the whole process in 3 reports which are available for download. Please click here to view the reports.

It was agreed that a new  Info Centre for Mamre would be ideal & important to start with first. The site for the Info Centre would be a convenient and central location in the historical part of Mamre.  The city made available a limited amount of funds to build a small building with the help of the community.

Eco Design Architects came up with a design and also oversaw the procurement of local and natural building materials such as thatching grass, stone, moon phase harvested timber and the production of 30 000 mud bricks.

Most of the local participants that were involved in the material procurement were also part of the building process. The building process had a strong focus on the reviving and transferring of old building techniques and skills. Most of the labour were local participants that were also involved in the material procurement phase of the project. All Adobe Bricks where made in Mamre. Alien gum and Poplar trees from close by where harvested according to the Moon Phase harvesting principles. The lime dung plaster was used from a traditional recipe that Herbert Arendse (A local old master builder from Mamre) had learnt from his grandfather. Eco Design has documented the making of this amazing plaster recipe in a newly compiled Info Manual (now available in our online shop).

With the completed Info Centre the town of Mamre now has a new focal point where locals and visitors can meet, visit exhibitions or just inform themselves more about Mamre’s rich heritage.

The official opening was on 16. April 2011. All timber work, joinery and all walls were finished with non toxic oils and paints. Furthermore water saving toilets and LED lighting were installed.

For more information about this project:



Masterplan for Mamre
The Design
The Building Process
The completed building
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We offer a number of construction & info manuals on our website on natural building technologies which specifically refer to the South African context. The info manual "A LIME DUNG PLASTER RECIPE" has recently been added to the collection.   Click here for more information.

All our manuals are also now available as E-Book downloads. Click here for the E-Books.